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Extreme weather – derecho storm brings about early closure of Duane Arnold nuclear plant

Duane Arnold nuclear plant decommissioning early after damage from the derecho 

by Rebecca Kopelman, Tuesday, August 25th 2020

Iowa (Iowa’s News Now) — The Duane Arnold Energy Center is beginning their decommissioning process after the August 10th derecho.

The energy center is the only nuclear power plant in Iowa. It was set to be decommissioned at the end of October, but will be closing due to the damage.

This is a statement from NextEra Energy Resources:

“After conducting a complete assessment of the damage caused by recent severe weather, NextEra Energy Resources has made the decision not to restart the reactor at Duane Arnold Energy Center. The strong storms that hit the area on Aug. 10 caused extensive damage to Duane Arnold’s cooling towers, and our evaluation found that replacing those towers before the site’s previously-scheduled decommissioning on Oct. 30, 2020, was not feasible.

As we have done since we announced the decommissioning of Duane Arnold in 2018, we will continue to work with all our employees to minimize the impact of this situation on them and their families.”

The storms damaged the cooling towers which are used to produce electricity to cool steam after it exits the turbine.The cooling towers are not required to cool critical nuclear components. There was also damage to the outside of the building.  None of the damage impacted safety systems or critical components.

August 25, 2020 - Posted by | climate change, USA

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